Ravens running back Ray Rice has had a rough offseason. His quarterback believes that, come September, all will be well.
According to Jordan Ranaan of NJ.com, Joe Flacco said Monday at Ron Jaworski’s celebrity golf tournament that Flacco believes Rice won’t be suspended in the wake of allegations that he knocked out at a casino a woman Rice has since married.
“I don’t foresee anything crazy happening with that,” Flacco said. “I’m expecting to have him [for the entire season].”
Still, if Rice pleads guilty or no contest to the charges, or if he enters a diversion program, his case becomes ripe for review under the personal conduct policy. At that point, Rice could be suspended.
Given the allegations against Rice and a troubling video that shows Rice dragging the mostly-unconscious woman out of an elevator, it’s hard to imagine the NFL not taking a hard line. Violence against women is inexcusable in all settings and contexts, and any perception that the NFL is soft on that subject could jeopardize its popularity among female fans.
The Ravens therefore need to be prepared for anything when it comes to Rice. While it’s Flacco’s prerogative to be optimistic, there’s a good chance he’ll be handing off for a game or two to someone other than Rice this year.